KICK Start to Early Literacy

2021 Champions "WRECking Crew"

KBT Flyer

DPIL Logo
SUPPORTING EARLY LITERACY

The Kickball Tournament's purpose is to support early literacy and continue to provide Hernando preschool children free books to help them grow their own little library and prepare them for kindergarten. All proceeds from this the "KICK" Start to Early Literacy Kickball Tournament will benefit United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library program, currently providing over 1,000 Hernando children with a free book every month from birth to age of five. The books are mailed directly to enrolled children regardless of their family’s economic status.

  • Saturday, March 26th at Anderson Snow Park

FREE FAMILY FUN DAY

Food Trucks:

Happy Camper The Kake Shop

 

Vendors:

NAMI Hernando Logo

Trucks: 

More details coming soon. Stay tuned!


BECOME A SPONSOR

Individual and Business Sponsorships are available for anyone who is interested in investing in a child’s future safely from afar. Your donation will enroll children onto the Dolly Parton Imagination Library program where free books will be mailed directly to their homes.

Business Sponsorship:

Get your Business involved and make a difference in the lives of many young children in Hernando.

Individual Scholarships:

Questions? Please contact the United Way office 352-688-2026 or email Impact@UnitedWayHernando.org.

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Kickball Player

2022 Team Lineup: 

  • Coming soon!

Kickball Coach

2022 Celebrity Coaches:

  • Sheriff Al Nienhuis, Hernando County Sheriff's Office
  • Dr. Amy Anderson, Pasco Hernando State College
  • April Johnson-Spence, Community Advocate
  • Brian Hawkins, Hawkins Family Foundation
  • Superintendent John Stratton, Hernando County Schools 
  • Natalie Kahler, Brooksville Main Street

Previous Kickball Champions & Their Impact
  • 2016: "Just Kickin' It" from Publix at Brooksville Square

  • 2017: "Just Kickin' It" from Publix at Brooksville Square

  • 2018: "WRECking Crew" from Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative, Inc.

  • 2019: "WRECking Crew" from Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative, Inc.

  • 2020: "Brooksville Bombers" from Publix at Brooksville Square & Celebrity Coach Jeff Rogers

  • 2021: "WRECking Crew" from Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative, Inc. & Celebrity Coach Jeff Rogers

With the 16 teams that participated in the 2021 Tournament, United Way was able to enroll an additional 461 children onto the Dolly Parton Imagination Library program and mail out 6,000 more books to local families last year.  

Click here to scroll through pictures from the Kickball Tournament.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 30, 2021

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WRECking Crew Crowned 2021 Kickball Champs
United Way Raises Over $12,000 for Childhood Literacy at Kickball Tournament

Spring Hill, FL – (March 30, 2021) – United Way of Hernando County hosted their 6th Annual "KICK" Start to Early Literacy Kickball Tournament at Anderson Snow Park on Saturday, March 27, 2021. Since 2016, local companies have battled it out in a friendly competition for the Ultimate Traveling Kickball Trophy. This year, COVID-19 safety precautions were implemented for the protection of the players, volunteers, vendors, and spectators. This included temperature checks at check-in, sanitation stations around the park, and proving masks for each dugout and vendor table.

Proceeds from this popular fundraising tournament benefit United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL), which supports childhood literacy by sending enrolled Hernando children a free book in the mail every month, from birth to age 5. The community came together to raise over $12,000 for DPIL, which will allow United Way to provide 6,000 books to enrolled children to help build their personal library.

After a long morning of Hernando businesses vying for the Championship Trophy, the final matchup came down between Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative’s Team WRECking Crew and their Celebrity Coach Jeff Rogers, Hernando County Administrator and The Plumadore Group’s Team Kicking Balls & Taking Listings with their Celebrity Coach Doug Chorvat Jr., Clerk of Court & Comptroller. It was a close game, but in the end The WRECking Crew were crowned the victors and the 2021 Kickball Champions.

Thank you to the following businesses and their accompanying Celebrity Coaches (CC) who competed in this year’s event:

  • Team "O'Berry's All Stars" from Publix at Seven Hills --> CC Allissa O'Berry, Publix #411
  • Team "The Heat" from the HC Sheriff’s Office --> CC Sheriff Al Nienhuis, Hernando County Sheriff's Office
  • Team "Average Joe's" from Publix at Mariner Commons --> CC Beth Narverud, Hernando County Commissioner
  • Team "Dupuis Demolishers" from Publix Hernando West --> CC Billy & Kristie Healis, Walmart Dist. & HC County Judge
  • Team "If You Ain't Amerifirst, You're Last" from Amerifirst Home Mortgage --> CC Blake Bell, Brooksville City Council
  • Team "Champa Bay" from Timber Pines Community Association --> CC Chance Phillips, Beer Frog/Evom
  • Team "Schwiftey Business" from Publix at Brooksville Square --> CC Chris Linsbeck, Hernando County Parks & Recreation
  • Team "Eleven Ninety Great" from Publix at Glen Lakes --> CC Doug Chorvat, Clerk of Court
  • Team "Oops! We Kicked It Again" from Publix Lakewood Plaza --> CC Dr. Eddie Williams, PHSC
  • Team "The Done Dealers" from Publix Avalon --> CC Dr. Joanie Davis, Davis Family Hearing
  • Team "Kicking Balls & Taking Listings" from The Plumadore Group --> CC Jeff Holcomb, Hernando County Commissioner
  • Team "WRECking Crew" from Withlacoochie River Electric Coop. --> CC Jeff Rogers, County Administrator
  • Team "World's Okayest Kickballers" from HC Schools --> CC Superintendent John Stratton, Hernando County School District
  • Team "Barrette Knights" from Barrette Outdoor Living --> CC Josh McGuire, Texas Roadhouse
  • Team "NO BASE LIKE HOME" from Century 21 Alliance Realty --> CC Marilyn Pearson Adams, Century 21 Alliance Realty
  • Team "Pitches Be Crazy" from Publix at Barclay --> CC Marvelous Marvin, HITS 106

Returning for the popular Mascot Fun Run were Andy the Armadillo from Texas Roadhouse, Pikachu, Carey the Cow, and Tommy the T-Rex. They were joined by newcomers Teachable T-Rex from Mid Florida Community Services Head-Early Head Start, Pasco Hernando State College’s Boomer the Bobcat, Olaf from Terlep Chiropractic, and the Shark from Nature Coast Technical High School. It was a close race, but in the end Tommy the T-Rex was crowned victorious.

Congratulations to all of the raffle winners!

  • Alex Killorn hat: John M.
  • TreeUmph!: Kelly G.
  • ZooTampa: Yamil F.
  • Wonderworks: Celeb Coach Jeff R.
  • Autographed Mike Evans football: Brandon S.
  • Mascot Fun Run: Cindy

A special thank you to all of our sponsors who proudly supported this fundraising event:

Thank you to United Way’s Proud Partners at the Boys & Girls Club, Foundations of Life Pregnancy Center, Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind, Mid-Florida Community Service’s Early Start and Head Start, NAMI Hernando, and People Helping People for providing local resources for families in attendance. LifeSouth Community Blood Center’s Blood Mobile encouraged spectators to donate blood and save a life, and Terlep Chiropractic offered a coupon for discounted services with proceeds donated back to DPIL.

With a high of 92 degrees on Saturday, United Way was fortunate to have BrainFreeze Italian Ice on site cooling off attendees with their delicious desserts, and Texas Roadhouse grilled hotdogs and hamburgers for the players, volunteers, and attendees. Mid Florida Community Services and Target sponsored a grab-and-go breakfast for players and volunteers.

PJ the DJ from The Arc Nature Coast provided upbeat music all day for the attendees, and everyone loved snapping a keepsake picture with the life-size cutout of Dolly Parton at the Foto Fun Booth. United Way would also like to thank National Anthem singer and Challenger K8 teacher Jonathan Kryk, Hernando County Parks and Recreation, and United Way of Hernando County volunteers, Board Members, and Kickball Planning Committee Members for generously donating their time, talents, and efforts to help make this event such a success.

group picture of kickball winners

2021 Kickball Champs: WRECking Crew from Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative

Celebrity Coach Jeff Rogers and Team David Gonzalez, Al Lemire, Zach Sorrentino, Jason Giddings,
Denine Sorrentino, Justin Owens, Rusty Lightbody, Justin Rubeo, Davd Moen, Taylor Scumaci,
Brittney Walker, Josh Velez, and Noah Torkelson.

For more information on available opportunities for community involvement, visit www.UnitedWayHernando.org/Kickball

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United Way of Hernando County, Inc.:
United Way of Hernando County (UWHC) was established as a 501c3 organization in 1987, and since then has continuously focused on creating partnerships and mobilizing our community to seek sustainable solutions to some of the most pressing local needs.  UWHC strategically allocates Community Investment Funds in Health, Education, & Financial Stability programs with proven results and local impact. For more information on how YOU can LIVE UNITED, visit www.unitedwayhernando.org.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 11, 2021

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 Help “KICK” Start Kids’ Love of Reading
United Way’s 6th Annual Kickball Tournament

Spring Hill, FL – (March 11, 2021) – If you enjoy watching friendly competition between Hernando County businesses while supporting early literacy for preschool children, then you don’t want to miss United Way of Hernando County’s 6th Annual “KICK” Start to Early Literacy Kickball Tournament. On Saturday, March 27th at Anderson Snow Park, 16 teams from local companies will compete for the opportunity to win the Ultimate Trophy and the title of Kickball Champions.

This fun-filled outdoor event is free to the public. National Anthem begins at 8:45 am and the first wave of teams kick off at 9:00 am sharp. Texas Roadhouse will be barbequing hot dogs and hamburgers, and food trucks The Peanut Shack and BrainFreeze Italian Ice will be selling their delicious snacks and ices.

PJ the DJ will be playing tunes all day, and attendees can stop by the Foto Fun Booth to take a fun picture with a life-size cutout of Dolly Parton herself. Don’t miss mascot fun run with special appearances by: Olaf the Snowman, Head Start’s Teachable T-Rex, Pikachu, Texas Roadhouse’s Andy the Armadillo, Nature Coast High School Shark, Central High School’s Bear, and PHSC’s Boomer the Bobcat.

All proceeds from this annual event benefit United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL) program, which provides enrolled Hernando County children with a free, age appropriate book in the mail every month, from birth to age five. Currently, 1,000 children are registered to receive a book every month regardless of their family’s economic status.

Thank You to our Event Sponsors:
Presenting Sponsor:
Holmes Drafting ServicesGrand Slam Champion

Field 1 Sponsor: Integrity Pest ControlHome Run Hero

Fields 2 & 3 Sponsor: PED-Stuart CorporationHome Run Hero

Field 4 Sponsor: Terlep ChiropracticHome Run Hero

Base Run Baller Sponsors: Carter Foreman PLLC, Cricket Wireless (Sun Com), Grow Financial Federal Credit Union, Rotary Club of Brooksville, Mid-Florida Community Services Head Start/Early Head Start, and Timber Pines Community Association/Scott Dienes Construction LLC.

team matchup

Due to COVID-19, United Way has implemented safety precautions such as: masks for all volunteers and participants in small enclosed spaces such as the dugout or score box, temperature checks for all participants and volunteers, and hand sanitizing stations set up throughout the 4 fields for attendees to use accordingly.

Vendors and Early Literacy Supporters include: Boys and Girls Club, Foundations of Life Pregnancy Center, LifeSouth’s Blood Mobile, Lighthouse for the Visually Impaired and Blind, Head Start/Early Head Start, NAMI Hernando, People Helping People in Hernando County, Pepsi, Sam’s Club, Terlep Chiropractic, and Wawa.

For more information, visit www.UnitedWayHernando.org/Kickball or like our event on Facebook.

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United Way of Hernando County, Inc.:
United Way of Hernando County (UWHC) was established as a 501c3 organization in 1987, and since then has continuously focused on creating partnerships and mobilizing our community to seek sustainable solutions to some of the most pressing local needs.  UWHC strategically allocates Community Investment Funds in Health, Education, & Financial Stability programs with proven results and local impact. For more information on how YOU can LIVE UNITED, visit www.unitedwayhernando.org.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 30, 2020

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United Way’s 6th Annual “KICK” Start to Early Literacy Kickball Tournament

Outdoor Event Prevails Safely During Pandemic to Support Free Book Program

Spring Hill, FL – (December 30, 2020) – United Way of Hernando County’s 6th Annual “KICK” Start to Early Literacy Kickball Tournament will safely be hosted on Saturday, March 27, 2021 sharply at 9am. Located outdoors at Anderson Snow Park, United Way will be taking extra safety precautions due to COVID-19 for the health and safety of the community. 

“This competitive community event helps provide thousands of books every year to children enrolled in United Way of Hernando County’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library program,” said Angie Walasek, United Way of Hernando County’s Executive Director/CEO. “Every participant’s registration fee sponsors one child on the program for a full year. With 14 teams participating in February 2020’s tournament, we were able to enroll over 200 additional Hernando preschool children and mail out 2,400 extra books this year. That’s why we knew it was so important to continue on with this event in 2021. We take the health of our participants and the community very seriously. New safety rules will be implemented for the tournament moving forward during COVID-19. Masks will be provided to all volunteers and participants in small enclosed spaces such as the dugout or score box and temperatures will be taken the morning of. Hand sanitizing stations will be set up amongst the 4 fields for spectators and participants to use accordingly. We’re excited to be in the position to safely continue this event for our community and support early literacy by helping children grow their libraries.”

On March 27th, 16 teams along with their celebrity coaches will be competing for the Ultimate Traveling Trophy as the 2021 Kickball Champions. All proceeds from this tournament will benefit United Way’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library program, which currently provides over 1,000 Hernando children with a free book every month until the age of five. The books are mailed to the children regardless of their family’s economic status. Sponsorships are available for individuals or businesses interested in investing in a child’s future safely from afar. Please contact the United Way office today or email Impact@UnitedWayHernando.org.

Get involved! Volunteers are needed for this tournament. Sign up on Lend a Hand Hernando to help with scorekeeping or work at the raffle table to giveaway fun prizes.

For more information, visit www.UnitedWayHernando.org/Kickball

or call the United Way office at 352-688-2026.

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